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John Fetterman says he’s ‘feeling really good’ in first interview since his stroke and has stayed ‘very involved’ in the campaign’s social media that has gained national attention for trolling opponent Mehmet Oz

Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, the Democratic nominee for Senate in Pennsylvania, at a campaign event.

Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

  • Pennsylvania Democrat John Fetterman gave his first interview Wednesday since suffering a stroke.
  • Fetterman, who has been off the campaign trail since May, said he’s “feeling really good.”
  • But he said that he’s working with a speech therapist to address some issues with his hearing.

In his first interview since he “almost died” from a stroke in May, John Fetterman — the Pennsylvania Democrat running for Senate against Dr. Mehmet Oz — said he’s “absolutely” capable of returning to the campaign trail.

Speaking to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Fetterman, currently serving as lieutenant governor, said he is “feeling really good” and hopes to return to in-person campaigning “very soon.” But the candidate also conceded he still has some trouble related to speech and hearing for which he is receiving treatment.

“I might miss a word every now and then in a conversation, or I might slur two words. Even then, I think that’s infrequent,” Fetterman said. “So I feel like we are ready to run, and that’s the only issues I have. That’s the absolute truth, 100%.”

Fetterman suffered a stroke on the eve of his victory in the Democratic primary. At the time, he said that he “should have taken my health more seriously” but had avoided going to a doctor despite feeling unwell. “As a result, I almost died.”

Recovering at his home in Braddock, the town in Western Pennsylvania where he spent more than a decade as mayor, Fetterman said he walks up to 5 miles a day. He also is “very involved in our social media,” he said — the campaign has regularly trolled Oz, his Republican opponent, for maintaining a home in New Jersey (Oz says he now lives, as of last year, with his in-laws in the Philadelphia suburbs).

Fetterman, who made his first in-person appearance in weeks when he spoke to campaign volunteers earlier this month, said he is preparing to return to more in-person events soon. He will be in Philadelphia on Wednesday for private fundraisers, the Post-Gazette reported.

The Fetterman-Oz matchup is being closely watched nationally, seen as Democrats’ best chance to pick up a Senate seat — the two are running to replace retiring Sen. Pat Toomey, a Republican — in the 2022 midterm elections.

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